HE faced the breeze for the entire journey, but Smooth Cash showed his toughness as he was able to muster a sustained sprint home to upset a favourite at the Bathurst Paceway on Wednesday night.
With talented reinswoman Amanda Turnbull in the gig, Smooth Cash had plenty of work to do in the NSW Breeders Challenge Three Year Old Geldings Pace (1,730 metres) when balancing in the straight.
Favourite Bettor Jiggle (Nathan Turnbull, $2.15) had kicked one and a half lengths clear and looked headed for his fifth win of the season.
But Smooth Cash found another gear and fought back, getting home by a neck.
"He does go good this fella, he went good the whole way, he was travelling nice," Turnbull said.
"I think he'll go good [in the semi-finals]. He does go good fresh and he had a bit of a spell before this, but they are spaced out pretty good, so I think he'll do good."
With Bernie Hewitt's in-form colt College Chapel, who had placed no worse than second in his last seven starts, scratched from the race it saw Bettor Jiggle take favouritism.
He fired out from barrier seven to cross and take the lead.
Behind him Turnbull, in the gig for her father-trainer Steve Turnbull, guided Smooth Cash forward on a three-wide move.
As the bell sounded Smooth Cash had found the death seat, sitting just over a length off the pace.
By the 400 Smooth Cash had closed that gap to be eye-balling Bettor Jiggle, but the favourite responded by kicking clear.
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Still, Smooth Cash fought back on his outside through a 27.7 seconds final quarter to get the nod.
The Mach Three x Shoutaloud gelding clocked a 1:58.1 mile rate as he posted his third win of the season.
Joining stablemate Smooth Cash in the NSW Breeders Challenge semi-finals will be Myra Dawn, who Turnbull guided to victory as the $1.50 favourite in her three-year-old fillies heat.
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It was the third consecutive win for the Bettors Delight x Sheezallattitude filly, who saluted by a half-neck.
Georges Plains trainer-driver Hewitt also snagged a pair of three-year-old Breeders Challenge wins.
He steered Make Mine Memphis ($1.45 favourite) to victory in a colts and geldings heat and Write About Lexy ($1.22 favourite) in a fillies heat.